My 17th cousin, fellow pyromaniac and ideological twin (in the sense that our ideas always run parallel to each other; they never meet), Hagaon Hakadosh Reb Steg (not to be confused with Steg, Steg, Steg, Steg or Stag) posted two “Passover hymns” on his website: the first, ‘Creeping Death’ by Metallica, deeply disturbs him. The second, ‘No More Auction Block For Me’ performed by several artists, including Maran Reb Zimmermann, deeply inspires him.
Brother Steg; please be not disturbed by a drunken, LSD saturated rock’n’roller who spends his life between Sunset Boulevard and different rehabs, and his money between CAIR, NAMBLA and the DNC. The idea that our G-d is cruel and vengeful is not new. In fact, I am fond of worshiping Him rather than some wussy surfer telling me to turn the other cheek or a pedophile obsessed with conquering the world by sword and fire.
But why indeed, did G-d pass over the houses with lambs’ blood on the lintels? According to one widely known peirush we were commanded to take a lamb ten days prior to the Exodus. The Egyptians would see how their deity is destined to be slain, yet be unable to prevent it.
What is idol worship? According to R. Avrohom Grodzniski (of the early baalei mussar), anything to which one attributes power, and worships it one way or another.
The Egyptians, even after witnessing G-d’s great power, clung not only to their idols, but their wretched slaves. (I mean, let’s be serious – how much could those kikes with big noses, Yerushalmi hats and flying pajes already worth as slaves? They probably swindled out half of Pharaoh’s hay, then smuggled it to Nubia and sold it as premium Egyptian gold dust.)
The lamb is not a major Egyptian deity – far behind Ra, Osiris, Isis, the scarab and some aquatic fowl. True, it is perhaps the only one fit for a korbon – but it was also the Jews’ parnossah (at least formerely - aparently, they still posessed flock even at that time). So now the G-d of Legions tells them that they will soon be out of Egypt – but first they’ll have to slay their own idol – to take Egypt out of themselves. The lamb will be no more a mere object of livelihood and nutrition. They’re not going to freedom just to build another empire like Egypt. And they're not going for a picnic either. They were going in an arid desert to receive a Law – a Law to cherish and live by, as a nation and as individuals. And to proclaim this, they had to stain the openings to their abodes with the lamb's -their own Gelt’s- blood. And while they sat inside, pondering on their future as the Torah’s Nation, The Giver Of Life smote the readers of the Book Of The Dead, who, even after witnessing G-d’s greatness in so many ways, after so many warnings, instead of rebelling against Pharaoh’s egomaniacal tantrums, followed him blindly, as slaves... to the power of death…
© Joseph Izrael 2008